Tweed Daily News

Murphy wins historic hat-trick

KAREN Murphy has created bowls history by being the first woman to claim a hat-trick of titles at the Australian Indoor Bowls Championships at the Tweed Heads Bowls Club yesterday.

Murphy, from the Cabramatta Bowls Club, was up against club-mate Lisa Mitchell, and posted a straight sets victory over the NSW bowler 13-1, 10-4, in the women's final.

She continued her golden run at the Australian Indoor Championships, stretching her win record over the past four years to 19-1, with three titles and a runner-up trophy from as many attempts.

With Mitchell competing in her first grand prix final, Murphy tormented her opponent from the outset as she claimed 10 shots from the opening three ends, including a full-count first up, to all but take the first set.

During the second set, Mitchell made amends for her slow start as she captured a double to commence proceedings, but Murphy was not going to relinquish her crown without a fight before going on to register a 13-1, 10-4 win.

“I'm rapt, absolutely rapt,” Murphy said.

“Tweed Heads has been a really good hunting ground for me with the Indoor and the (Golden) Nugget, but I don't know what it is about the venue.

“I lost the final to Judy Nardella four years ago, so I've only lost one in my past 20 here, but it's great to have won it again and it means I get another chance (to represent Australia at the World Cup).”

In the men's final, the large crowd was kept on the edge of their collective seats as Helensvale's Anthony Kiepe played the bowl of his life to claim a euphoric men's final over Todd Simmons on the indoor green yesterday afternoon.

Having fought his way back from a set down, Kiepe, who lost the 2007 final to Kelvin Kerkow, appeared to have the game wrapped up with just two bowls to play before Clayton Bowls Club's Simmons conjured a miracle.

Staring defeat in the eyes, Simmons unleashed a once-in-a-lifetime drive that sent the jack flying through the air and when the dust settled was holding match.

With four feet to draw to the ditch, Kiepe dropped a nervous bowl down the rink and thrust his hands to his head as the bowl appeared to be short of the money.

But with his heart pumping and the crowd waiting with bated breath, Keipe managed to narrowly draw inside of three of Simmons' bowls to claim a 5-7, 7-6, 3-1 victory.

“It's a dream come true,” Kiepe said following the match.

“I think I dropped the bowl, the last bowl, but I made it in the end.

“I think I was just meant to win this one.”

As a result, Kiepe and Murphy will now fly the flag for Australia at next year's World Cup.

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